Decretalism and the Laws of Nature

Philosophia Christi 19 (2):439-447 (2017)
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Abstract

In his article, “Breaking Laws of Nature,” Jeffrey Koperski considers various attempts to give an account of the laws of nature. Following early modern natural philosophers, he opts for an account he terms “decretalism,” namely the view that laws are not created entities or powers that act as intermediaries between God and nature, but rather are best understood as God’s decrees. Koperski argues there are good reason for accepting his account and that it does not commit him to occasionalism. In response, I argue that the reasons he gives for accepting decretalism are unconvincing and that decretalism does in fact commit him to occasionalism.

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Robert A. Larmer
University of New Brunswick

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